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Hoa

ethnic group
group= Hoa


caption=
poptime=2.3 million
popplace= Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh City, Can Tho, Bac Lieu, Da Nang, Kien Giang, Quang Ninh; Hong Kong; United States; Australia; Canada
rels=Predominantly Mahayana Buddhism, Taoism with Confucianism (Ancestor Worship). Small numbers of Catholics and Protestants.
langs=Vietnamese, Cantonese, Teochew, Hakka
related=
Chinese|title=Hoa|t=|p=Yuènán huáqiao|j=jyut naam waa kiu|poj=O̍at-lâm Hôa-kiâu|vie=người Hoa,
người Khách,
người Hán,
người Tàu (might be offensive) [Literally meaning "boat," the term "Tàu" may also used as an adjective, placed after a noun to signify something Chinese, such as India ink ("mực tàu"), jujube ("táo tàu"), or Chinatown ("phố tàu"). This usage is derived from the fact that many Chinese refugees came to Vietnam in boats during the Qing Dynasty. In this usage, it may sometimes be considered derogatory.]

Hoa refers to a minority in Vietnam consisting of persons considered to be ethnic Chinese. They are often referred to as either Chinese Vietnamese, Vietnamese Chinese, Sino-Vietnamese, or ethnic Chinese in/from Vietnam by the Vietnamese populace, Overseas Vietnamese, and other ethnic Chinese. The Vietnamese government's classification of the Hoa excludes two other groups of Chinese-speaking peoples, the San Diu ('mountain Chinese') and the Ngai.

According to the 1999 Vietnamese census, with 1.1% of the population, the Hoa are the 6th-largest ethnic group in Vietnam.

Languages

, again usually in a Vietnamese accent. The younger generation of Hoa in Vietnam tends to speak both Vietnamese and Cantonese.

The intermarriage between the Hoa and the majority Kinh ethnic groups is the highest compared to other minorities in Vietnam. [ [http://www-wds.worldbank.org/servlet/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/2002/05/30/000094946_02051604452763/Rendered/PDF/multi0page.pdf World Bank Document ] ]

They are predominantly urban dwellers. A few Hoa live in small settlements in the northern highlands near the Chinese frontier, where they are also known as "ngai". In 1955, North Vietnam and China agreed that the Hoa should be integrated gradually into Vietnamese society and should have Vietnamese citizenship conferred on them.

Occupations

Before 1975 the northern Hoa were mainly rice farmers, fishermen, and coal miners, except for those residing in cities and provincial towns. In the South, the French colonizers had allowed the Cholon Hoa to be the trading middleman. Subsequently, they became dominant in commerce and manufacturing. According to an official source, at the end of 1974 the Hoa controlled more than 80 % of the food, textile, chemical, metallurgy, engineering, and electrical industries, 100 % of wholesale trade, more than 50 % of retail trade, and 90 % of export-import trade. Dominance over the economy enabled the Hoa to "manipulate prices" of rice and other scarce goods. This particular source further observed that the Hoa community constituted "a state within a state," inasmuch as they had built "a closed world based on blood relations, strict internal discipline, and a network of sects, each with its own chief, to avoid the indigenous administration's direct interference." It was noted by Hanoi in 1983 that as many as 60 % of "the former bourgeoisie" of the south were of Hoa origin.

Nowaday, due to these efforts, the Hoa take a small part in the economic of Vietnam.

History

Population

As of 2006, the Hoa became the largest ethnic minority in Vietnam, with figures of 2.3 million. [ [http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/4130.htm] : Source from the US Department of State shows (source linked) that as of 2006 there are 2.3 million Hoa in Vietnam. The 1.3 million figure from 1999 excluded people not counted as 'Hoa' in that census, and Hoa population has also increased dramatically since 1999 due simply to large birth rate.]

In mid-1975, when North and South Vietnam were unified, the combined Hoa communities of the North and South numbered approximately 1.3 million, and all but 200,000 resided in the South, most of them in the Saigon metropolitan area, especially in the Cholon district (Chinatown). Beginning in 1975, the Hoa bore the brunt of socialist transformation in the South.

An announcement on March 24 outlawed all wholesale trade and large business activities, which forced around 30,000 businesses to close down overnight [Far East Economic Review, 14 April 1978, p. 12] , followed up by another that banned all private trade [Far East Economic Review, 5 May 1978, p. 10-11] [Asiaweek, 28 April 1978, p. 16-18] . Further government policies forced former owners to become farmers in the countryside or join the armed forces and fight at the Vietnam-Cambodia border, and confiscated all old and foreign currencies, as well as any Vietnamese currency in excess of the US value of $250 for urban households and $150 by rural households. [Straits Times, 4 May 1978, p. 26] [Straits Times, 5 May 1978, p. 1] [Straits Times, 30 May 1978, p. 12] [Straits Times, 27 June 1978, p. 1] [Straits Times, 22 May 1978, p. 1] [Asiaweek, 28 April 1978, p. 16-18] While such measures were targeted at all bourgeois elements, such measures hurt ethnic Hoa the hardest and resulted in the takeover of Hoa properties in and around major cities. [Straits Times, 10 June 1978, p. 1] [Chang, Pao-min pg. 207] Hoa communities offered widespread resistance and clashes left the streets of Cholon "full of corpses". [Straits Times, 4 May 1978, p. 26] [Straits Times, 18 September 1978, p. 2]

These measures, combined with external tensions stemming from Vietnam's dispute with Cambodia and China in 1978 and 1979 caused an exodus of as the majority of the Hoa, of whom more than 170,000 fled overland into the province of Guangxi, China, from the North and the remainder fled by boat from the South. China received a daily influx of 4-5,000 refugees, while Southeast Asian countries saw a wave of 5,000 boat people arriving at their shores each month. China sent unarmed ships to help evacuate the refugees, but encountered diplomatic problems as the Vietnamese government denied that the Hoa suffered persecution and later refused to issue exit permits after as many as 250,000 Hoa had applied for repatriation. [Chang, Pao-min pg. 215-218] In an attempt to stem the refugee flow, avert Vietnamese accusations that Beijing was coercing its citizens to emigrate, and encourage Vietnam to change its policies towards ethnic Hoa, China closed off its land border in 1978. [Xinhua, New China News Agency, 11 June 1978] This led to a jump in the number of boat people, with as many as 100,000 arriving in other countries by the end of 1978. However, the Vietnamese government by now not only encouraged the exodus, but took the opportunity to profit from it by imposing a price of five to ten taels of gold or an equivalent of US $1,500 to $3,000 per person wishing to leave the country. [Chang, Pao-min pg. 222] [Far Eastern Economic Review, 12 May 1978, p. 9] [Far Eastern Economic Review, 22 December 1978, p. 9] [Straits Times, 15 November 1978, p. 1] [Straits Times, 20 November 1978, p. 2] The Vietnamese military also forcibly drove the thousands of border refugees across the China-Vietnam land border, causing numerous border incidents and armed clashes, while blaming these movements on China by accusing them of using saboteurs to force Vietnamese citizens into China. [Chang, Pao-min pg. 223] [British Broadcasting Corporation, Summary of World Broadcasts, Pt. III, The Far East, No. 5881 (3 August 1978), p. A3/6] [British Broadcasting Corporation, Summary of World Broadcasts, Pt. III, The Far East, No. 5883 (5 August 1978), p. A3/3] [British Broadcasting Corporation, Summary of World Broadcasts, Pt. III, The Far East, No. 5897 (22 August 1978), p. A3/2] [British Broadcasting Corporation, Summary of World Broadcasts, Pt. III, The Far East, No. 5900 (25 August 1978), p. A3/3] [British Broadcasting Corporation, Summary of World Broadcasts, Pt. III, The Far East, No. 6902 (29 August 1978), p. A3/1-2] This new influx brought the number of refugees in China to around 200,000. [Xinhua, New China News Agency, 5 January 1979]

The size of the exodus increased during and after the war. The monthly number of boat people arriving in Southeast Asia increased to 11,000 during the first quarter of 1979, 28,000 by April, and 55,000 in June, while more than 90,000 fled by boat to China. In addition, the Vietnamese military also began expelling ethnic Hoa from Vietnam-occupied Kampuchea, leading to over 43,000 refugees of mostly Hoa descent fleeing overland to Thailand [Chang, Pao-min pg. 227] By now, Vietnam was openly confiscating the properties and extorting money from fleeing refugees. In April 1979 alone, Hoa outside of Vietnam had remitted a total of US $242 million (an amount equivalent to half the total value of Vietnam's 1978 exports) through Hong Kong to Ho Chi Minh City to help their friends or family pay their way out of Vietnam. [New York Times, 13 June 1979] By June, money from refugees had replaced the coal industry as Vietnam's largest source of foreign exchange and was expected to reach as much as 3 billion in US dollars. [Straits Times, 8 June 1979, p. 36] By 1980, the refugee population in China reached 260,000 [Straits Times, 10 July 1989] , and the number of surviving boat people refugees in Southeast Asia reached 400,000. [Based on UNHCR estimates. see Straits Times, 13, October 1978, p. 3] (An estimated 50% [Straits Times, 8 June 1979] [Straits Times, 8 May 1980] to 70% [New York Times, 13 June 1979] of boat people perished at sea.) By the end of 1980, the majority of the Hoa had fled from Vietnam. In addition to ethnic Hoa, an estimated 30,000 ethnic Vietnamese refugees fled to China.

Immigration to other countries

Today, there are many Hoa communities in Australia, Canada, France, and the United States, where they have been instrumental in breathing new life into old existing Chinatowns. For example, the established Chinatowns of Los Angeles, Houston, Toronto, and Paris have a Vietnamese atmosphere due to the large presence of Hoa people. Some of these communities also have associations for transplanted Hoa refugees such as the l'Association des Résidents en France d'origine indochinoise in Paris.

The Vietnamese poulation in China now number up to 300,000, and live mostly in 194 refugee settlements mostly in the provinces of Guangdong, Yunnan, Fujian, Hainan, Jiangxi, and Guangxi. Most (85%+) have achieved economic independence, but the remainder still live below the poverty line in rural areas. While they have most of the same rights as Chinese nationals, including employment, education, housing, property ownership, pensions, and health care, they had not been granted citizenship and continued to be regarded by the government as refugees. Their refugee status allowed them to receive UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) assistance and aid until the early twenty-first century [U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, World Refugee Survey, [http://www.refugees.org/countryreports.aspx?subm=&ssm=&cid=1577] ] . In 2007, the Chinese government began drafting legislation to grant full Chinese citizenship to Indochinese refugees, including the ethnic Hoa which make up the majority, living within its borders [Indochinese refugees may get Chinese citizenship, Reuters, Fri Jun 1, 2007 12:40AM EDT. [http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSPEK9279520070601?pageNumber=1] ] .

There is also a sizable Hoa refugee population - many of whom speak Cantonese - in Hong Kong, but they have experienced discrimination in housing and employment.

In the United States, the Hoa have also started businesses in prominent Vietnamese communities called Little Saigon near Los Angeles and San Jose, including those in the states of California, Texas, and Washington. They own a large share of businesses especially catering to the local Vietnamese population.

Hoa concentrations in Vietnam

Vietnam
*Ho Chi Minh City: Cho Lon
*Da Lat
*Tra Vinh province

Vietnamese of Hoa descent in other countries

Hong Kong
*Yuen Long

Australia
*Melbourne: Box Hill, Footscray, Springvale
*Sydney: Cabramatta, Bankstown

Canada
*Montreal: Chinatown, Montreal, Brossard
*Ottawa, Ontario
*Toronto: Chinatown, Toronto, Mississauga, North York, Ontario, Kitchener, Ontario, Waterloo, Ontario
*Windsor, Ontario

France
*Paris: 13th arrondissement

United Kingdom
*London: Hackney, Lewisham

United States
*Boston: Chinatown; and larger presence in Dorchester section
*Chicago - New Chinatown
*Detroit: Madison Heights, Michigan
*Honolulu: Chinatown
*Houston: Chinatown, Houston (Bellaire), Alief
*Los Angeles: Little Saigon/Orange County, Chinatown, Los Angeles, Lincoln Heights, San Gabriel Valley
*Philadelphia: Chinatown
*San Francisco: Little Saigon/San Francisco (Tenderloin district), San Jose, Fremont, Oakland, California
*Seattle: International District, Seattle, Washington

Notable persons

* Tsui Hark, Hong Kong film director
* Frank Jao, pioneer of the Vietnamese American enclave of Little Saigon in Orange County, California, USA
* Lui Leung-Wai, Hong Kong actor
* Christy Chung, Hong Kong actress

ee also

* List of ethnic groups in Vietnam
* San Diu people

References

External links

* [http://www.nguoihoa.hochiminhcity.gov.vn/ Chinese Affairs Department of Ho Chi Minh City] - in Vietnamese, English, and Chinese


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